Sunday, July 3, 2011

The no electricity game continues

The no electricity game weekend has been a fun time for all, if you don't mind 105° outside and no ice to cool your water.  The kids did spend extra time in our swimming pool (650 gallon stock tank). 

I thought about our Oklahoma friends who go without electricity each winter for anywhere between several days and several weeks depending on how many power lines are downed due to storms.  And here we are, playing no electricity when our power rarely goes out for more than a few seconds.  It is good practice though, especially for the grandkids.  I don’t want anything to come as a surprise if there’s a way that we can practice. 

The game was really easy because granddaughter has decided that she doesn’t like bills.  Perhaps not for her but every time I have to go to the store she’s continuously asking for me to buy her stuff.  She just doesn’t want to part with her own money.  Anyway right before I brought up the no electricity weekend she asked how much our electric bill is.  I told her it’s usually $35-$40 a month when it’s just us but with her aunt, uncle and cousin it’s between $75 and $100, and now with the air conditioning it may be $250!  She said that she doesn’t want any electric bill when she grows up.  What perfect timing to say let’s have a weekend without electricity.  I also told her to enjoy the air conditioning because her aunt and uncle are paying the electric bill over $35 so as soon as they move out the AC is getting turned off!

How have things worked out so far?  Army daughter isn’t playing so they still have the air conditioning running.  We have two air conditioning units in the house and their half covers their side of the house and the dining room.  My room and the grandkids rooms are not being air conditioned.  It’s about 80 on our side of the house.  Before I go to bed I’ll crack open some of the windows to let the cool air in.  It is going into the 60s at night so the house temperature in the morning is around 75. 

We used the solar oven to cook a chicken and vegetables yesterday.  It worked well.  We had left over chicken and I deboned it and put it back into the solar oven but kept the top open a bit.  I dried it into a jerky.  Today I made a vegetable soup using a combination of fresh vegetables and jarred tomato juice from last year.  I put everything into the Dutch oven and left it on the cement patio in the sun.  In 40 minutes the soup had cooked to 140°, which was a great temperature.  I cut up a few pieces of the chicken jerky and we had chicken vegetable soup.  I’m not too sure why I wanted anything hot with the weather we’ve been having but it tasted great. 

Since the water runs on electricity we have not taken showers, instead we’ve played in the stock tank.  We don’t have to use the indoor toilets.  We have the outhouse in the backyard and the trailer toilet (although we haven’t used the trailer toilet).  

The house stays light until about 8:00 at night, then the kids got sent to bed and I used the computer without any lights on.  The computer is running on the battery and I only have about an hour left.  I have a candle next to the bed and each bathroom has an oil lamp if needed.   

I miss ice cubes the most.  Otherwise, we haven’t really missed the electricity.  Tomorrow, the 4th of July, we are having a party.  We will see how the rest of the family likes the no electricity game or if they spend their entire time in Army daughter's room.

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